Daily Archives: June 14, 2009

There’s been a lot of kvelling by the usual suspects over an NYT Op-Edby Nassau County executive Tom Suozzi. To whit —

“WHEN I ran in the Democratic primary for governor against Eliot Spitzer in 2006, I vocally supported civil unions for same-sex couples but did not endorse equal marriage. I understood the need to provide equal rights for gays and lesbians, but as a practicing Catholic, I also felt that the state should not infringe on religious institutions’ right to view marriage in accordance with their own traditions. I thought civil unions for same-sex couples would address my concerns regarding both equality and religious liberty.
I was wrong.”

Well isn’t that special.

“I have listened to many well-reasoned and well-intentioned arguments both for and against same-sex marriage. And as I talked to gays and lesbians and heard their stories of pain, discrimination and love, my platitudes about civil unions began to ring hollow. I have struggled to find the solution that best serves the common good.”

Verry Barryesque. Don’t take a stand, play referee between the “two sides.”

“I now support same-sex marriage. This is a subject of great debate before the New York State Legislature (although the legislators there are a little distracted right now), and I hope that same-sex civil marriage will be approved within the month.”

Notice rhetorical Three-Card Monte? Suddenly “Civil” pops up.

Neat.

“Under current New York State law, same-sex couples are deprived of access to the employment benefits, life and health insurance and inheritance laws that heterosexual couples have. If the state were to institute civil unions for same-sex couples, that discrimination would end, but we’d still be creating a separate and unequal system.”

Precisely.

“Civil unions for both heterosexual and same-sex couples would be an equal system, but this compromise appears unlikely at the current time. Few heterosexual couples would give up their current civil marriage for a civil union. While some states would recognize civil unions for all, others would not, causing legal problems for New York couples. Advocates of same-sex marriage don’t seem in favor of such a compromise either.”

Love the “seem.”

“According to the last census, there are an estimated 50,000 households headed by same-sex couples in New York, many who were married in other states. Those marriages are recognized by New York courts as valid. As a result, we have same-sex marriage for some in New York (albeit performed out of state) and no marriage at all for other same-sex couples.
Any change in the New York law can, and must, balance equality while making sure that religious institutions remain free to choose whether to marry same-sex couples. By following the example of Connecticut and Vermont, which included protections for religious institutions when they recently legalized same-sex marriage, we can ensure that churches are not forced to consecrate marriages they do not endorse. This will require a strong liberty clause allowing religious institutions to opt out of solemnizing same-sex marriage, which also applies to the provision of services and programs at religiously affiliated institutions.”

No special clause is needed, Santa Claus.

You’re aware of course that athiests can get married, aren’t you?

You’re aware of course that Marriage is a contract provided by the state not the church, aren’t you?

It would seem you aren’t.

“Many civil marriages are not considered “holy matrimony” by religious institutions because they do not conform to the rules of the religious institution. Those marriages have not challenged religious liberty. We must see that civil marriage, which has always been separate from religious marriage, will remain so.”

Those “unholy” matrimonies are perfectly legal, dear. You can get one via a judge, Mayor, Justice of the Peace or duly licensed Las Vegas Elvis impersonator. What those who believe in a Big Invisible Bi-Polar Daddy Who Lives in The Sky think doesn’t matter shit.

“But most important, gays and lesbians have suffered too long from legal discrimination, social marginalization and even violence. They are entitled to clear recognition of their equal status as citizens of a country that is founded on the principle that we are all inherently worthy. By delivering a clear message that same-sex couples can no longer be treated as separate and unequal in New York, we will also reduce discrimination in everyday life. We will all be better for that.”

Cue “We Are The World.”

“Equal civil marriage should, and likely will, pass because of the public’s growing unwillingness to sustain inequality. Society will also be strengthened as more people take responsibility for one another in marriage. I now encourage others who oppose gay marriage to re-examine the reasons they do so, and to consider changing their minds too.”

I’ll be your high school civics teacher is real proud of you.

Wish I could say I cared. But I don’t. For as I have pointed out this week’s big story was President Barry Prejean’s not merely throwing us under the bus, but backing that bus over us. Repeatedly.

Needless to say among our “friends” at the Daily Kos , this was Good News.

“I am an attorney, and I am a federal government attorney. I am here to say that Obama is keeping a promise with regard to DOMA, just not one you are thinking about in your haste to call him out as having abandoned the GLBT community by filing a brief arguing in support of DOMA.
Here’s the promise you claim he is breaking: By defending DOMA in court, he is breaking his promise to fight for gay and lesbian rights. He is breaking a policy promise.
I think that is incorrect.
Rather, here’s the promise he is keeping: He is keeping his promise that he will serve and act as President as if America is a nation of laws, which it is. He is keeping his promise to uphold the law.
Let me start by saying I understand the frustration about Obama’s promises regarding gay equality, particularly in the area of DADT. You are right to scream from the rafters that you think he is not keeping his word. You are right to scream that he is not keeping his word on any host of issues. That relates to policy promises, and I don’t have a comment on that in this diary. Whether he is keeping his policy promises is a different issue.
I want to address the brief filed in support of the Defense of Marriage Act. That Act preceded Obama. He inherited that law. It was on the books when he came into office, and because it has been challenged, he and his DOJ have an obligation to defend the law if there is a legal basis to defend it.
That’s exactly what I want my President to do.”

He’s your President dear, not mine. Being a second-to-third-class citizen I don’t have a President.

Just an Arresting Officer.

Meanwhile in this LAT editorial about California Supremes blowback –

“At issue are the court’s rulings on same-sex marriage and Proposition 8, and its chief justice, Ronald M. George. In May 2008, the court overturned the state’s ban on gay marriage, striking a victory for civil rights in the grandest tradition of constitutional protection of minorities. A few months later, after voters approved Proposition 8 and amended the state Constitution to ban the same institution that the court had upheld, George and his colleagues upheld the amendment. Both times, George wrote for the majority. He thus angered opponents of gay marriage in 2008 and supporters of it in 2009.”

He’s an Equal Opportunity Pisser-Offer.

“By California’s rules, George faces a retention election in 2010, and some predict that he could face challenges from either side — or even both — in this polarizing debate.
That would be a shame for the state’s judiciary, an unfortunate attack on judicial independence and an unfair castigation of one of this state’s most principled and admirable public officials. In the gay-marriage cases, George’s votes demonstrated conscience, professionalism and restraint. He voted to uphold same-sex unions out of the strong conviction — which this page shares — that the Constitution does not allow society to deny the protection of marriage to gay couples any more than it once denied it to those united across race. The ruling was right on the law, and will certainly be validated over the long march of history.”

Be sure to get some comfortable shoes for that long march.

“Months later, voters tacked in the other direction, narrowly rejecting gay marriage and amending the Constitution to allow California to recognize only the unions of heterosexual couples. That was challenged, naturally, and the lawsuit offered the court the opportunity to extend its earlier ruling, though on shaky constitutional grounds — advocates for same-sex marriage argued that Proposition 8 was such an affront to the rights of Californians that it revised the Constitution rather than merely amending it. Scholars split on the merits of that argument, and although the strong consensus of legal opinion rejected it, an opportunistic justice might have seized the chance to solidify his legacy.”

So what “will be validated” is “opportunistic.” Got that?

“Instead, George subordinated his politics — as evidenced by his writing — to the weight of constitutional opinion. He voted to uphold the proposition, even though it undid his own work. Permitted latitude within the strictures of the Constitution in the first case, George was able to vote his conscience; bound by the Constitution in the second case, he yielded.”

“Bound”? Is Justice George a Leather Bottom?

“Such is the lot of a principled judicial officer, but those concerned only with results already have signaled their unhappiness with George. The moneyed interests that supported Proposition 8 last fall are considering whether to finance a campaign against George next year. Supporters of gay marriage, who championed his heroism in 2008, were bitterly disappointed when the court upheld the hateful initiative.”

“Bitterly disappointed” scarcely describes my Seething Rage. It’s shared by some. But not by others. Because Teh Gheys of the HRC and NLGTF are so easily played and so often.

Which is why they’re not leaders.

President Prejean isn’t a leader either. He’s merely a Maitre D. He presides over the room, gets the customers seated, and tells them what the “specials” are.

He doesn’t cook them. Nor does he dictate the menu.

That’s done by our corporate rulers — who are of course unelected.

As I’ve trust we’ve all learned by now “Change” is an advertizing slogan for President Prejean. Not anything at all real.

Actual change will come with the overthrow of Capitalism and the Heterosexual Dictatorship that holds it in place.

Until then Tony Kushner’s Roy Cohn is as apt and “on point” as ever.

And I am never again participating in an election of any sort.

Sing us out boys —